Estadio Monumental Antonio Vespucio LibertiEdit profile
Estadio Monumental Antonio Vespucio Liberti, also known as El Monumental de Núñez or River Plate Stadium, is a stadium in the Belgrano district of Buenos Aires, Argentina at the intersection of Figueroa Alcorta and Udaondo. It is the home venue of Club Atlético River Plate and is named after former club president Antonio Vespucio Liberti. El Monumental is considered to be the national stadium of Argentina.
River Plate was founded in 1901 and by 1934, they had won both an amateur and professional championship. At the time the club was known as Los Millonarios, or The Millionaires, because they would purchase players at higher prices than normal at the time. On October 31, 1934, River Plate purchased the land where the club was to build the new stadium in the neighborhood of Nuñez.
On May 25, 1935, the cornerstone was laid on the campus of Centennial Avenue and River Plate. On December 1 of that year, the Steering Committee presented the approved project in detail to its members at an assembly. They obtained a loan of $2,500,000 from the government and on September 27, 1936, construction began under the direction of architects José Aslan and Héctor Ezcurra.
The initial cost of work reached the figure of $4,479,545.80, but decreased about 3 million dollars when the committee decided to halt the construction of the north end of the stadium.
A distinctive feature of construction was to be the foundations; six or eight feet deep. This required open pit excavation for the stability of the ground , and pumping bilge water from the site. The construction of the three stands were completed in two years. There are 50 km of steps, with 26,000 square meters of reinforced concrete and almost 3,000 tons of steel. A few years later , during World War II, the steel used would have cost more than the whole stadium.
May was also the month chosen to inaugurate the new stadium. On Wednesday the 25th, about 8,000 people witnessed the placement of an Argentine flag and one from the club, paid for by a group of associates, and sang the national anthem and the progress of River Plate.
The next day, the festival brought together nearly 120,000 spectators. After various activities the great evening was completed with the match played between River and Peñarol from Uruguay, with a 3–1 victory for the home team.
The horseshoe was fully enclosed in 1958, under the club presidency of Enrique Pardo. The new construction, the Colonia stand, was financed by the proceeds from the 10M pesos transfer of Omar Sivori to Juventus of Italy. With these changes the capacity reached 130,000.
The accomplishment of the World Cup one of 1978 motivated that – with a lending of the Military Government to River Plate – the stadium was remodelled completely. River Plate was late many years in paying the corresponding quotas due to the changes of currency, which harmed it notably.
One of the largest attendances in the Monumental was a promotion game between San Lorenzo and Tigre, in which San Lorenzo (which did not have a stadium at the time) brought 74,000 people to River's stadium. When River played Racing for the title (after 18 years) 100,000 were present. At the end the 1986 and 1996 Copa Libertadores second-leg finals (both against América de Cali), seats were added and approximately 85,000 spectators were in attendance. It is also estimated that for the Argentina versus Uruguay 1987 Copa América semifinal more than 87,000 spectators attended.
The total length of the seating in the stands of the stadium is over 70 kilometers.
The stadium has room for 66,449 people, and was renewed for the 1978 World Cup; the opening and final matches were both held in the Monumental, which had a capacity of 76,600 at the time because all of the popular stands were standing-only.
The stadium complex also has facilities for tennis, basketball, and other sports, as well as living quarters for young footballers, a theatre hall, a parking lot, museum etc. It can be accessed by several train and bus lines, as it is located within walking distance from the Barrancas de Belgrano transportation hub. Contrary to most other stadiums in the Buenos Aires area, there is a sizable car park by the stadium.
Sporting events held
The Monumental, aside from being where River Plate plays as host team, is also the stadium where the Argentine National Football Team usually plays as host, in events such as the FIFA World Cup qualification.
Rugby union matches featuring the Argentina national rugby union team, Los Pumas, also take place occasionally in this field, although the Pumas more frequently play at another Buenos Aires venue, Vélez Sársfield.
The Monumental also hosted the closing ceremonies and the athletics events of the First Pan American Games in 1951.
When an international music superstar or band comes to Buenos Aires, their concerts are usually held in this stadium, as it is the biggest in the city and in all of Argentina.
The stadium played host to Amnesty International's final Human Rights Now! Benefit Concert on October 15, 1988. The show was headlined by Sting and Peter Gabriel and also featured Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Tracy Chapman, Youssou N'Dour, León Gieco and Charly García.
David Bowie Sound+Vision Tour was held in September 29, 1990. He sold more than 81,900 tickets from one only show.
On July 16–17, 1993, Guns N' Roses performed the final concerts of their Use Your Illusion Tour, marking their last performance with most of their original lineup.
During his Dangerous World Tour, Michael Jackson performed 3 sold-out concerts in October 8th, 10th and 12th, 1993, in front of 300,000 spectators.
Soda Stereo holds the record for the highest number of concerts in the stadium. The band played six sold out concerts in 2007, during their Me Veras Volver Reunion Tour.
Madonna performed 4 sold-out concerts in December 2008, during her Sticky & Sweet Tour; during two of these concerts, an official DVD of the tour was filmed. She holds the record for fastest sell out concert at the stadium for her first show, with 3 hours and more than 263,000 tickets sold.
In 2009 the British band Oasis offer one of the biggest concerts of their history, Noel Gallagher and the Argentine public sharing an emotional moment, playing "Don't Look Back In Anger".
AC/DC performed three sold out shows in December 2009, during their Black Ice World Tour. These shows were filmed and released on the DVD and Blu-ray Live at River Plate, released in May 2011.
On January 21–22, 2010, Metallica performed two concerts as part of their World Magnetic Tour.
In May 2011, Miley Cyrus brought her Gypsy Heart Tour which sold out in a week.
1978 FIFA World Cup
The stadium served as venue for the following matches during the world cup: